tip: organising answers

Ch
Chris Laarman
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2016 12:18 pm
Platform: Mac + Windows

Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:40 pm Post

(My first use of both Scapple and Scrivener, my first post here. It's not a bug report, but according to the Contact Information page this is the right spot.)

Situation: A social organisation has members fill in an on-line questionnaire. As much multiple-choice as possible. And then this final open question... Socially-engaged people love to express themselves in that one. But how to process these answers, to turn them into something useful?
(In this case: just over 100 answers from just over 500 submitted questionnaires.)

As I currently see it, this amounts to regrouping (possibly) several ideas per person into (possibly) several backers per idea.

Handling: I was given the answers as a Microsoft Word document, one answer per page.
I started coding the Word document: numbering the answers, preceding these with the unlikely string of two pounds, adding trailing letters where deemed necessary. (E.g. "##004b" would identify the second idea in the fourth answer.)

From glancing over the document, I had some impression of (sub)categories to make.

In Scapple, I first created some reference note indicating these categories, then "header" notes for each (sub)category.
Then I copied every idea from the Word document into a separate note in Scapple, naming these notes by that identifier and a keyword.
I'm in that process now. I have changed from linking the notes to the header notes and stacking the lot to firstly getting a loosely stacked line of every idea-note before putting these into the appropriate stacks.
I presume that I'll end up exporting an Outline from Scapple (and ultimately probably a Word document again), alongside my working copy of the Word document (with these identifiers).
Thus, everybody can trace the outcome to the input. The next step would be to submit all relevant ideas to the people in charge.

Caveat: I take the real trick to be in assessing the original answers: into what elements should they be split, if at all.
By using my identification process I can check the context or entanglement.

Well, I do hope to help people by sharing this.
Literature and Latte, this may be a selling point. ;-)